, Letter, , Lancashire, England, to JS and the , , Hancock Co., IL, 13 Mar. 1842; handwriting of ; three pages; JS Collection, CHL. Includes addresses and docket.
Bifolium measuring 13 × 8¼ inches (33 × 21 cm). The bifolium was originally part of a larger book used as a ship’s passenger manifest. Each preprinted page includes eight columns of varying widths demarcated by red vertical lines. Red horizontal lines create a header row containing column titles: “No. of Ticket.”, “NAMES.”, “Age.”, “Under 14.”, “Under 7.”, “Infts.”, “OCCUPATION.”, and “WHERE BOUND TO.” Below the header row, each page is ruled with forty blue horizontal lines. The text of the letter is written across the columns of the first three pages. The bifolium was trifolded twice in letter style, addressed with both the mailing address and return mailing information, and sealed with two red adhesive wafers. Remnants of the adhesive wafers are on the verso of the second leaf. The letter was later refolded for filing.
The document was docketed by , who served as scribe to JS from 1842 to 1844 and as temple recorder from 1842 to 1846. It may be one of the 1842 letters from listed in inventories that were produced by the Church Historian’s Office (later Church Historical Department) circa 1904. By 1973 the document had been included in the JS Collection at the Church Historical Department (now CHL). The document’s early docket as well as its possible inclusion in the circa 1904 inventories and its inclusion in the JS Collection by 1973 indicate continuous institutional custody.
JS, Journal, 29 June 1842; “Clayton, William,” in Jenson, Latter-day Saint Biographical Encyclopedia, 1:718; Clayton, History of the Nauvoo Temple, 18, 30–31.
Jenson, Andrew. Latter-day Saint Biographical Encyclopedia: A Compilation of Biographical Sketches of Prominent Men and Women in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 4 vols. Salt Lake City: Andrew Jenson History Co., 1901–1936.
Clayton, William. History of the Nauvoo Temple, ca. 1845. CHL. MS 3365.
See the full bibliographic entry for JS Collection, 1827–1844, in the CHL catalog.
On 13 March 1842 wrote to JS and the in , Illinois, concerning a new plan to acquire goods and funds to help streamline the migration of British Saints to the . In April 1841 the apostles in reported that voyages to were less expensive than voyages to but that “it will never do for emigrants to go by New Orleans in the Summer on account of the heat and sickness of the climate.” Therefore, the did not charter vessels in summer 1841. From September 1841 through February 1842, the church chartered five ships that carried approximately 990 converts to New Orleans. A sixth vessel, the Hanover, was scheduled to depart on 14 March 1842 for the Saints’ final voyage before summer.
In his 13 March 1842 letter, introduced and recommended , who planned to depart the following day on the Hanover. Fielding was an English convert who was appointed in April 1841 “to superintend the fitting out of the Saints from to .” Pratt explained that Fielding wanted to secure an emigration agent in and organize travel up the to . In addition, Pratt explained that Fielding would arrange for gold and fabrics from to be exchanged for flour and wheat from Nauvoo. Fielding would bring the flour and wheat with him when he returned to to assist with emigration starting in September. The plan to exchange gold and goods was believed to be mutually beneficial. Nauvoo was functioning as a barter society with an abundance of goods but little monetary wealth. Money was more readily available in Great Britain, but goods there were six times the price of goods in Nauvoo, according to Pratt.
suggested he would send the letter via , who departed for the three days after Pratt wrote the letter. The absence of postal markings suggests that the letter was hand delivered. JS responded to Pratt on 12 June 1842, noting that would return to England as Pratt requested.
In a January 1842 letter to Pratt, Joseph Fielding described the economy in Nauvoo, stating that “almost all things here are carried on without the use of money.” (Joseph Fielding, Nauvoo, IL, to Parley P. Pratt, Jan. 1842, in Millennial Star, Aug. 1842, 3:79.)
In regard to Emigrating to the western States, and Shall <[illegible] it so, more fully,> quite, by Next fall if God will, as our plan is so far superior Superior to all others in this Buisiness. We shall no doubt send some 5000 or 6000 passengers next fall and Winter to . and if you will you may hire Boats and take them all up the your selves. and be sure that arrangments are made for them not to touch at . An emigration officer and Agent Who is a faithful and trustworthy man is Greatly needed at .
Now Dear Brethren, if you can Manage to supply this plan and take the goods and gold, and send back by the first Sept I am shure it Will be a great advantage to you; but if not, please be so kind as to assist and advice him Where, and who to Deal with. Our own ships for emigra Emigrants, Will consume several hundred Barels of flour on Ship B[o]ard, next fall and Winter. for Inst We Buy some fifty Barrels of Bread thus far this Ship and It is the sixth ship we have sent this season.
Dear Breth[re]n, we are all well and prospering exceedingly; the power of god is With us in all this . thousands are awaking to the truth, We are continually doing for the , and I expect if the Lord will to Come to next Spring with all the means We can muster, to be laid out in Lands and Building. is in , and Was Well on the 18th January. [p. ]
When Pratt returned to the United States in January 1843, he avoided St. Louis: “I would not venture into Missouri after the abuses I had experienced there in former times.” (Pratt, Autobiography, 361–362.)
Pratt, Parley P. The Autobiography of Parley Parker Pratt, One of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Embracing His Life, Ministry and Travels, with Extracts, in Prose and Verse, from His Miscellaneous Writings. Edited by Parley P. Pratt Jr. New York: Russell Brothers, 1874.